Western European News Digest
British Prime Minister Refuses to Reopen Probe of BAE
July 4 (EIRNS)U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown rejected a call to reopen the Serious Fraud Office investigation of BAE-Saudi arms deal, insisting the decision to prosecute is "not a matter for the prime minister or for the government." This was in response to a request by Liberal Democrat leader Sir Menzies Campbell, who asked, "Will he order the reopening of the investigation into allegations of corruption into arms sale?"
U.S. Congress Stalls Polish Missile Defense
July 5 (EIRNS)The anti-missile defense system which has put Europe in the middle of another U.S. and Moscow conflict may never get funded. Because it doesn't work.
The Senate Armed Services Committee is delaying funding for construction of ten interceptor missile sites in Poland and for an X-band radar in the Czech Republic, according to today's Washington Post. The House, in passing its version of the 2008 Defense Authorization Bill last month, cut $40 million which would have funded work on the Polish sites for next year.
One of the reasons for the objections from the senators is that Moscow opposes the deployment. The Armed Services Committee report on the bill said that any funding should await completion of talks between the two nations, the Post reports. The Senate panel also noted that the interceptor missile for Poland is not even developed yet.
Stoiber Supports Putin Proposal for Joint Missile Defense
July 6 (EIRNS)After his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow yesterday, Edmund Stoiber, governor of the German state of Bavaria, said that he supports Putin's proposal for joint missile defense development between Russia and NATO. The Russian variant is preferred by Germany, and is better conceived to protect Europe, Stoiber said, adding that missile threats could be monitored and assessed from two centers, one in Moscow and the other in Brussels. He also mentioned that Putin briefed him on the Kennebunkport summit talks.
"I'd like to express gratitude to the Russian President for informing me about his recent talks with President George Bush on missile defense," Stoiber said. "The Russian President explained that there were two variants. The first one is that it will be deployed as the Americans want: with bases in Poland and the Czech Republic that will, certainly, lead to toughening positions, and ... complicates cooperation between Russia and the U.S., and Russia and NATO. The second variant is that to do everything jointly under the auspices of the Russia-NATO Council, with the two information centers in Moscow and Brussels, in compliance with a plan under which, in addition to the radar station in Gabala (Azerbaijan), a radar station may be built in southern Russia."
I believe that the position of Germany and the German government, and in any case of my [Bavarian state] government and my [CSU] party, is absolutely clear: we favor the second variant; we favor close cooperation in order to defend all Europe and not its separate parts," the Stoiber said.
Stoiber also said he would inform German Chancellor Angela Merkel about the results of his meeting with Putin. "I should say Germany's federal government supported the second variantcooperation between the sidesand not America's actions alone for the sake of America itself, that may lead to difficulties for Europe, and this is not our goal," he added.
Denmark and Germany Will Build Fehmarn Belt Bridge
June 30 (EIRNS)The governments of Denmark and Germany yesterday signed the long-awaited agreement to build the Fehmarn Belt Bridge, which will link the two nations across the Baltic Sea. At present, the crossing has to be made by ferry.
The agreement came after a long period of obstruction on the German side, which even lasted into the final round of talks in Berlin. The German resistance was linked to the government's hesitancy to provide state credit for the project. The two sides finally agreed to "share" the costs of the project: 85%, or 4.8 billion euros, will be covered by Denmark, the remaining 15%, or 800 million, by Germany. The bridge will, therefore, be a "Danish bridge," after completion by 2018.
Details of the agreement still have to be negotiated. The Christian Democrats in the state parliament of Schleswig-Holstein, the German terminus of the bridge, wholeheartedly welcomed the deal, calling it the "most important infrastructure link between the continent and Scandinavia in the past 50 years."
German Foreign Minister: 'Revive Europe-Asia Silk Road'
June 30 (EIRNS)German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier had an op-ed published in today's Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, under the headline, "Revive the Silk Road," in which he endorsed intensified relations and cooperation between Europe and the Central Asian states, centered on energy and the region's role as a pivot between Europe and Asia. For too many years, the region remained a "white spot on the map, for us Europeans," Steinmeier noted. "The myth of the Silk Road and the exchange of wealth that went along with it, were entirely forgotten." This shall change, he added, mentioning a European role in the improvement of water resources management; this refers to the project of a German-funded Water Academy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. The new Central Asia strategy of the European Union is one of the successes of the German EU presidency, Steinmeier wrote.
EU Joins Campaign vs. Italian Social Expenditures
June 30 (EIRNS)EU Economic and Monetary Affairs Commission chairman Joaquin Almunia has joined the chorus of vultures who have demanded that the Italian government use tax revenue surpluses to balance its budget, instead of funding needed social programs. Almunia expressed deep worries about the government draft budget, issued yesterday, because it is not in agreement with the Eurogroup guidelines, according to the daily Il Mattino.
The Eurogroup includes EU members who have already adopted the single currency. Eurogroup chairman Jean-Claude Juncker, who is also Prime Minister of the bankers' mini-state Luxembourg, had issued decree-like statements against Italy on June 28. Italy's Undersecretary of Economic Development, Deputy Minister Alfonso Gianni, accused Juncker and others of aiming to overthrow the Italian government, in statements Gianni released to EIR. Interestingly, EU Commissioner Almunia revealed that Italy pays for public debt service more than Eu68 billion, about 5% of GDP. This is twice the amount allocated yearly for public investments. Also, at present, investment expenses are counted as "current" expenses by member nations of the Eurozone, instead of being part of a capital budget, thus making it impossible to plan development without EU watchdogs swooping down to intervene.
U.K. Press Echoes Post 'Angler' Series on Cheney
July 2 (EIRNS)Echoes of the four-part Washington Post "Angler" series on Vice President Dick Cheney have been appearing throughout the U.S. press, while from London, yesterday's Sunday Telegraph summarized that series as well. In it, columnist David Broder confessed, "Where I thought, mistakenly, that it would be a great advantage to Bush to have a White House partner without political succession in mind, it has turned out to be altogether too liberating an environment for a political entrepreneur of surpassing skill operating under an exceptional cloak of secrecy."
Italian Test Debunks JFK 'Lone Assassin' Theory
July 2 (EIRNS)An experiment conducted under the supervision of the Italian military has proven that U.S. President John F. Kennedy could not have been killed by the gun fired by Lee Harvey Oswald alonethus further discrediting both the "lone assassin" and the "magic bullet" theories.
According to the report published by the Italian news agency ANSA today, the gun allegedly used by Oswald a Carcano model 91/38, was produced in 1940 in Terni, Italy. A test conducted at Terni by Kennedy assassination researcher Claudio Accogli, of the Italian news agency ANSA, under the supervision of officers from the Logistics Command of the Italian Army, has now proven that the 91/38 weapon has a maximum firing speed of five seconds per shot. The test shooter took 19 seconds to fire three shots, as compared to the seven seconds that Oswald allegedly needed for three shots, according to the Warren Commission.
The Terni experiment also demonstrated that the "magic bullet" theory is a fraud: a bullet fired by a Carcano 91/38 through two slabs of meat was so deformed by the impact, as to exclude the possibility that the bullet cited could have hit two persons and remained intact. The test is documented in a video posted on www.ansa.it.
The significance of the release of these findings, must be seen in the context of Lyndon LaRouche's June 21 webcast, and earlier locations, in which LaRouche has identified the profound changes that have occurred since the assassination of JFK in 1963with the launching of the Indochina War, the demoralization of the American population, the emergence of the anti-science, existentialist '68er generation, and the breakup of the U.S. Democratic Partyresulting in the world now entering a period of generalized warfare. Kennedy was not killed by a "lone assassin," said LaRouche. "He was killed to get him out of the way."